Questions tagged [vajrayana]

Vajrayāna is also known as Tantric Buddhism, Tantrayāna, Mantrayāna, Secret Mantra, Esoteric Buddhism and the Diamond Way or Thunderbolt Way. According to Vajrayāna scriptures "Vajrayāna" refers to one of three vehicles or routes to enlightenment, the other two being the Hinayāna and Mahayana.

Filter by
Sorted by
Tagged with
19 votes
3 answers
1k views

Are Vajrayana and Tibetan Buddhism the same thing?

This is a hugely amateurish question, for which I apologize, but: are Vajrayana and Tibetan Buddhism the same thing? If not, how are they related? In particular, does the term "Tibetan Buddhism" ...
senshin's user avatar
  • 818
16 votes
6 answers
3k views

What teachings do all schools of Buddhism share?

Among the many schools and traditions, what core teachings are shared by all Buddhists?
Robin111's user avatar
  • 9,532
11 votes
1 answer
550 views

How is semchen (sentient being) defined?

Semchen is typically defined as a sentient being. What does this mean? What is sentience? This question about killing bacteria indicates bacteria are not sentient, but I distinctly remember a guru ...
Richard Morgan's user avatar
10 votes
9 answers
456 views

Does sutta recitation actually entail understanding of the text?

I'm particularly interested in Chinese morning and evening service Tibetan sadhanas that a monk recites every day Theravada Pali suttas and chants Are these read in modern times by and to an ...
MatthewMartin's user avatar
8 votes
2 answers
11k views

Buddhas of The Ten Directions

What are the Buddhas of the ten directions? What are the applications of this teaching in the Buddhist traditions?
DharmaEater's user avatar
  • 2,189
8 votes
4 answers
4k views

How does Shambhala differ from traditional Vajrayana Buddhism as it is practiced in Asia?

How is Shambhala Buddhism as founded by Chögyam Trungpa Rinpoche and continued by folks like Pema Chodron different from traditional Tantric Buddhism such as that practiced by the Dalai Lama? Does ...
user avatar
7 votes
2 answers
2k views

Are there any cultural or religious guidelines for Buddhist tattoos?

I've notice people on Instagram are getting tattoos of Mahakala and other Buddhist deities. Are there any cultural or religious guidelines to consider when getting a tattoo of a Dharmapala or any ...
DharmaEater's user avatar
  • 2,189
7 votes
3 answers
3k views

How do Buddhists use mudras?

This is a practice question. I know both Mahayana buddhists and Vajrayana buddhists use mudras. In the former they show up in inconography, and hand resting positions while meditating, in the later it'...
MatthewMartin's user avatar
7 votes
3 answers
3k views

What is a wrathful Buddha?

In reading this answer to another question there were many references to "the peaceful and wrathful buddhas" in the quote from The Tibetan Book of the Dead. This is a tradition that I'm not very ...
Robin111's user avatar
  • 9,532
7 votes
1 answer
1k views

What are the core Mahayana and Vajrayana Sutras?

When starting a more in-depth study of the Dharma from a Mahayana and Vajrayana perspective, what are the core (3 most recommended) Sutras (or texts), and the reasons why they are considered important,...
Devindra's user avatar
  • 1,830
6 votes
2 answers
493 views

Sutras in Western Buddhism?

How should western practitioners approach the sutras? What are the most important sutras from the main Buddhist traditions for westerners to study? When studying the sutras should that be considered a ...
DharmaEater's user avatar
  • 2,189
6 votes
3 answers
402 views

Tathagatagarbha and dhammakaya

Can we consider 'tathagatagarbha' and 'dhammakaya' as synonyms? If not, what is the difference between those words.
Guy Eugène Dubois's user avatar
6 votes
6 answers
365 views

To debate or not to debate? and When to debate? and How to debate?

When we have several people with different understanding of Buddhism, how should we decide who is right? Debate is very tempting in Buddhism, but on the other hand, we must respect other people's ...
konrad01's user avatar
  • 9,857
5 votes
2 answers
4k views

What are the main differences between the Theravada, Mahayana and Vajrayana branches of Buddhism? [closed]

The question basically says it all, but I'll try to elaborate a bit: Are there differences in terms of the concepts used in each of these branches? Are there differences in the practices of each of ...
JNat's user avatar
  • 357
5 votes
2 answers
3k views

What is a refuge tree?

What is the nature of a refuge tree(s)? How does one incorporate a refuge tree(s) into their practice?
DharmaEater's user avatar
  • 2,189
5 votes
5 answers
197 views

Sutra Study as Meditation?

When studying the sutras should that be considered a form of meditation, if so what are the guidelines for sutra meditation?
DharmaEater's user avatar
  • 2,189
5 votes
1 answer
479 views

Distinction between Dharmaguptaka and Mahayana

what's the distinction between Dharmaguptaka and Mahayana? I know that the former is an ordination lineage with specific vinaya as distinct from Theravada ordination, but I don't understand where ...
Anthony's user avatar
  • 2,598
5 votes
4 answers
332 views

Vajrayana Buddhism relies on a teacher-pupil relationship. What in tradition or the literature explains how to find the appropriate teacher?

Vajrayana Buddhism is esoteric, in the sense that the transmission of certain teachings only occurs directly from teacher to student during an initiation or empowerment and cannot be simply learned ...
user avatar
5 votes
2 answers
2k views

Is there a specific practice that leads to a "rainbow body"

First of all is the "rainbow body" almost similar in the different lineages of Tibetan Buddhism? Then the above question. Thanks
Samadhi's user avatar
  • 3,398
5 votes
1 answer
268 views

What is a Vajrasattva?

I recently heard the term Vajrasattva and wondered if that is another term for a Bodhisattva? How does the Vajrasattva path differ from the path of a Bodhisattva?
DharmaEater's user avatar
  • 2,189
5 votes
3 answers
6k views

Vajra Posture vs Lotus Posture -- the same or male vs female?

I always thought that "Vajra Posture" and "Lotus Posture" were simply two names for the same thing. But recently somebody told me that Vajra Posture is for males and Lotus Posture for females, though ...
David Lewis's user avatar
  • 1,187
5 votes
1 answer
412 views

What is Completion Stage Meditation also known as Nispannakrama?

In Vajrayana there appears to be many different types and stages of mediation. One form is called "completion stage meditation" also known as nispannakrama. It appears to be associated with something ...
DharmaEater's user avatar
  • 2,189
5 votes
0 answers
195 views

Meditation techniques used in different branches/traditions of Buddhism [closed]

What are some meditation techniques used in different branches/traditions/vehicles of Buddhism? Please provide the name of the technique, names of branches/traditions/vehicles that apply this ...
4 votes
6 answers
900 views

Finding The Right Buddhist "Vehicle" / Sect For An Individual

I know there are three vehicles in Buddhism: Therevada, Mahayana, and Vajrayana. It seems there are so many sects of buddhism. Each of these three vehicles has sub-sects, (Zen, Pureland). Do the ...
Henry F's user avatar
  • 141
4 votes
3 answers
4k views

How did Chogyam Trungpa Rinpoche justify drinking alcohol?

How did Chogyam Trungpa Rinpoche justify drinking alcohol? How did his students justify his drinking? Is it possible an enlightened being could or would drink alcohol if they had been physically ...
Lowbrow's user avatar
  • 7,134
4 votes
6 answers
325 views

Which Buddha do Buddhists take refuge in?

Does one take refuge into the concept of Buddhahood or refuge into Gautama Buddha? What about Vairocana Buddha or Amitābha Buddha for that matter? I've heard various things from taking refuge in a ...
DharmaEater's user avatar
  • 2,189
4 votes
4 answers
500 views

What is the Buddhist perspective on passively altering your subconcious?

Firstly I'd like to provide some context: When I first began getting into the Buddhist teachings, specifically that of the Theravada tradition, I'd often do things such as passively play the ...
Sorav's user avatar
  • 345
4 votes
2 answers
2k views

Is Tantrayana the same as Vajrayana?

I'm reading a little bit from the Tibetan Buddhist lama Dhardo Rimpoche at the moment. He keeps referring to Tantrayana not Vajrayana when discussing Buddhist philosophy and practice. It's pretty ...
Crab Bucket's user avatar
  • 21.1k
4 votes
1 answer
244 views

Green Tara Light?

Recently, I heard a Tibetan nun Venerable Robin Courtin mention on a video that a meditator saw a green light while meditating. She mentioned it was associated with Green Tara. What is the green ...
DharmaEater's user avatar
  • 2,189
4 votes
4 answers
469 views

Mind-Stream Continuum's Origination?

What is the origination of the mind-stream continuum? What are the basic elements that make up the mind-stream continuum?
DharmaEater's user avatar
  • 2,189
4 votes
1 answer
100 views

Yama depiction on various Tankas

I saw many images of the circle of existence represented with Yama, the lord of death, with a tiger skin and a third eye. Why is he represented in this way?
Doubtful Monk's user avatar
4 votes
1 answer
131 views

Could anyone explain: (1) What are the advantages of practicing Guru Yoga? (2) Why (or What are the reasons) practicing Guru Yoga has such advantages?

The question is just the title. Moreover, AFAIK, currently there are 2 editions of the 14th Dalai Lama Guru Yoga. (1) "The Source of All Attainments: The Yoga of the Inseparability of the Guru ...
user avatar
4 votes
6 answers
236 views

Why are there so many different paths?

I will admit I am just starting to look into buddhism and such. I am confused because so far I understand that the Satipatthana sutta provides everything anyone needs to become 'enlightened'. If ...
Jake's user avatar
  • 41
4 votes
2 answers
3k views

What is Generation Stage Meditation also known as Utpattikrama?

There are many forms of meditation found in Buddhism. Zazen is possibly the most well know form of meditation in the West. However, in there are many different types of mediation. In Vajrayana ...
DharmaEater's user avatar
  • 2,189
4 votes
0 answers
178 views

Transcription of Yamāntaka mantra chanting fragment

I am a total outsider not well-versed in the Buddhist tradition, and apologize in advance if some of the terms/names I'll write are placed out of context or misused. To cut the story short, I am ...
9214's user avatar
  • 149
3 votes
4 answers
635 views

According to Buddha's characteristics and teaching in Pali Canon, could he have taught Vajrayana (and Karmamudra)?

One of the characteristics of Vajrayana is its secret transmission (esoteric tranmission) of certain teachings. The other one is the controversial karmamudra (sexual practice to reach spiritual ...
fxam's user avatar
  • 971
3 votes
3 answers
197 views

What comes first: effort or motivation?

Master Shi Heng Yi referred to Laozi (Chinese Taoist Teacher) as saying that It's better to remain clam and do nothing while achieving nothing than doing a lot and investing a lot of effort and ...
Noob's user avatar
  • 348
3 votes
2 answers
3k views

What is a Mudra and what do they mean?

In Buddhist iconography the figures are illustrated or depicted with various hand gestures. The symbolic hand gestures are called mudras. What is the significance of a Buddhist mudra? What are the ...
DharmaEater's user avatar
  • 2,189
3 votes
3 answers
996 views

Does Vajrayana Buddhism incorporate the use of cannabis?

I'm reading a Wikipedia article on Vajrayana Buddhism and it says: "In Tantric Buddhism, which originated in the Tibeto-Himalayan region, cannabis serves as an important part of a traditional ritual......
Beliod's user avatar
  • 71
3 votes
3 answers
197 views

What will the Satipatthana Sutta teach me?

I am completely new to all this (buddhism, meditation etc...) but I really want to begin somewhere I found this guy called Stephen Procter who has this free guided meditation program (52 guided ...
Jake's user avatar
  • 31
3 votes
1 answer
122 views

Books for understanding Tibetan Buddhism

I have been practicing Buddhist meditation for a few years, mostly from reading translations of the Buddha's original discourses, as well as some Prajnaparamita sutras from Mahayana Buddhism. I've ...
functorial's user avatar
3 votes
3 answers
275 views

Satori and stream entry

Is Satori like a stage of stream entry? Is Satori only an intellectual knowing or something deeper than that?
Lowbrow's user avatar
  • 7,134
3 votes
4 answers
247 views

Does Vajrayana accept the idea that Buddha placed Lord Yama (a supposed Bodhisattva) in charge of the hell realms to ensure karmic retribution?

In reading this answer to another question I came across this link which is seemingly a Tibetan Buddhist site proclaiming the following: In Buddhism the two beings that are often confused with the ...
user avatar
3 votes
3 answers
245 views

Is it a bad heavy karma to criticize or give up your guru?

"However it is said in the Guhyasamaja Root Tantra:" "If sentient beings commit an action As grave as the five heinous crimes He [still] can attain the superior Vajra Vehicle, But who from within ...
Erik's user avatar
  • 31
3 votes
1 answer
1k views

prajna vs jnana across schools

Can anyone explain the difference between the terms prajna and jnana and how they differ between schools? I learnt for several years with a chinese tradition, where we were taught that prajna is ...
sean read's user avatar
  • 141
3 votes
5 answers
323 views

Vajrayana VS theravada - after death theories - do they contradict each other?

As far as i understand the having opposing views about what happens between after you die until you are reborn again right ? or do they "sit together" some how ?
breath's user avatar
  • 1,473
2 votes
4 answers
118 views

Buddhism and Mental Illness(Depression, Schizophrenia, Hallucinosis, etc)?

Hello, I'm a Vajrayana practitioner since 2018, Nyingma School, and have been taking medication for 3 years. What's the Buddhist point of view of Mental Illness and Hallucinations ? I'm asking this ...
Hundred Songs's user avatar
2 votes
3 answers
413 views

Vajrayana Buddhism: Teachings the Buddha reserved for "only some individuals"?

Wikipedia says this about Vajrayana Buddhism: "According to several Buddhist tantras as well as traditional Tibetan Buddhist sources, the tantras and the Vajrayana was taught by the Buddha ...
Alex Ryan's user avatar
  • 594
2 votes
1 answer
92 views

Is sky burial ritual inhumane and if not what is the reason for doing it?

When it seems inhumane, why is it practiced? I know Buddha didn't find. Wikipedia document says: Sky burial (Tibetan: བྱ་གཏོར་, Wylie: bya gtor, lit. "bird-scattered" is a funeral practice ...
Swapnil's user avatar
  • 2,164
2 votes
4 answers
117 views

Concentrating on Breathing

I have been experiencing energy flow on my head,especially at the tempels, even after meditation. I have only started on Breathing concentration. What is it? I have stopped meditation for fear of ...
Adhvay rai's user avatar